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Mykonos is the place that probably springs to mind first as a Greek island paradise. These windmills, very commonly found in the Greek islands, are picturesque but not functional. The old windmills were used for milling grain.

Greece does use modern windmills on its numerous high mountain ridges to make electrical power from the strong winds that buffet the islands. But you don't see them on postcards.

Mykonos is a small island. According to legend, it was created by Herakles (Hercules to the Romans) when he threw a piece of a rock at the Giants. There are 365 churches on the island, one for every day of the year, though most people don't come to Mykonos to pray. Most of the churches were built by sailors and their families, grateful to be out of storms in the Aegean.

This is the most famous church in Mykonos, the Church of Paraportiani, or Church of the Postern Gate (the postern gate was once part of a medieval fortress.) Inside the church, there are four chapels with curved vaults. Part of the church dates from 1425 and the rest from the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.

Petros the pelican was a mascot of Mykonos for twenty-nine years. In the 1950s, a flock of migrating pelicans passed over the island, but Petros was too exhausted to go on. A kindly fisherman nursed him back to health and Petros became a fixture on Mykonos. Locals insist that the white pelican you see is the original Petros, ignoring the stuffed display of the original bird in a local museum and overlooking the two younger pelicans we saw in the harbor. It could be that the original Petros was really Petrina, but in any event, the pelicans have become a fixture on Mykonos, hanging around and waiting for scraps of fish.
The word Cyclades means "circle", and what the Cyclades Islands are circling is the ancient holy island of Delos. Legend claims that Zeus' children Apollo and Artemis were born on this island, but even written history demonstrates settlements on the island as long ago as the third millennium BC.

Always a holy island, treasures and offerings were left ashore for the gods, undisturbed though they were out in the open. During Roman times, the island was a free port, with a lively commerce in, for example, the slave trade. At one time, about 10,000 human beings a day exchanged hands here.

This area houses the remains of the "lion terrace." The lions, skinny and apparently ready to strike, were carved in the seventh century BC. The original carvings are protected in the on-site museum.